Among the strong and influential citizens of Marion county, the record of
whose lives have become an essential part of the history of the section, the
gentleman whose name appears above occupies a prominent place, and for many
years has exerted a beneficial influence in the community in which he
T. W. Williams, the well-known Justice of the Peace at Salem, Illinois, was born in Silver Springs, Wilson county, Tennessee, May 22, 1837, the son of W. G. Williams, a man of sterling worth and influence, who was born and reared at Silver Springs. He came to Illinois in 1845, locating in the northern part of Marion county which is now embraced in Kinmundy township, where he developed a farm, making a comfortable home and a good living during his residence there. Thomas Williams, father of W. G. Williams and grandfather of the subject of this sketch, came to Illinois with the family in 1845. He was a North Carolinian by birth and a fine type of the true Southern gentleman. He followed farming all his life. He died in Kinmundy. W. G. Williams died in 1904, at the advanced age of eighty-seven years. The mother of the subject was Mary Morning, a native of old Virginia and a woman of many estimable traits. She passed to her rest in 1852. Mr. and Mrs. W. G. Williams were the parents of nine children as follows: Elizabeth, widow of R. G. Williams, who now lives in Foster township, Marion county; T. W., our subject; Othnial, who is living at Raleigh, Saline county, Illinois, was a soldier in the Civil war; Joseph died while in the Union army; G. H. also died in the Union army; George M. was killed while in the Federal ranks; Henry N. also died in the Union army; Carroll died in infancy; Mary Jane is the wife of John Carman, living at Kinmundy, this county.
The subject's father married the second time, his last wife being Martha Bocikiewicz, and by this union five children were born as follows: Piety Smith, now de-ceased, who lived in Hamilton county, Illinois; W. G., Jr., who is living in Hamilton county; F. O., who is also a resident of Hamilton county; John V., is a Baptist minister, living at Galitia, Saline county, Illinois; Priscilla died at the age of ten years.
T. W. Williams, our subject, was raised on the farm and attended the common schools where he diligently applied himself and received a fairly good education. After he reached maturity he bought and sold livestock, making this business a success from the start, having much natural ability as a trader. He lived on the farm for twenty-five years. He also made a marked success later dealing in livestock and grain, becoming widely known not only as a man of unusual industry but also of scrupulous honesty.
Having taken a lively interest in politics and becoming well known throughout the county he was sought out by his political friends for positions of public trust, having first served as Deputy Sheriff in 1890 of Marion county for a period of two years, with the greatest satisfaction to all concerned and reflecting much credit upon his innate ability as an official. In 1893 he became Deputy Circuit Clerk, in which capacity he ably served for five years. Mr. Williams was postmaster at Kinmundy, Illinois, in 1885, during Cleveland's first administration. He had previously been living on his farm, but he then moved to Kinmundy and from that town to Salem in 1900 for the purpose of assuming the duties of Deputy Sheriff. In all of his official career not the shadow of suspicion of wrong has rested upon him, and he has given uniform satisfaction to all concerned in whatever place he has filled. He was the Democratic nominee for Sheriff in 1894, but was defeated by a Republican candidate.
Mr. Williams' early life was devoted very largely to school teaching, having won a lasting reputation throughout Marion county as an able instructor and his services were always in great demand. He followed this line of work from the time he was twenty-one until he was forty years old, having taught not only in Marion but also Hamilton and Saline counties. He has given his time to the duties of the office of justice of the Peace, to which he was elected in 1900. He is also engaged in the hotel business, being the present proprietor of the Williams House, which he has managed for ten years. Owing to the courteous treatment and excellent accommodations which the traveling public finds at this house, it has a liberal patronage and has become well known to those finding it convenient to stop at a well-kept hostelry.
The domestic life of Mr. Williams began when he was united in marriage with Juliet Boczkiewicz on March 27, 1859. She was a representative of a highly respected and well known family of this county. By this union the following interesting children have been born: Henrietta, the wife of George M. Hargrove, of Fayette county, Illinois; Annetta, deceased; Alfe, the wife of W. W. Newis, of Salem; W. W., of Centralia, this state; Walter, of Ashland, Cass county, Illinois; T. S., of Salem.
These children have received good educations and careful home training which is clearly reflected in their lives.
Mrs. Williams was called to her rest in 1881, and Mr. Williams was married again in 1884 to Nannie L. Williams, a daughter of T. C. Williams, of Kinmundy, a well-known family of that place. There have been no children by this union.
Fraternally Mr. Williams is affiliated with the Masonic order, having belonged to this lodge since he was twenty-five years old. He is a member of the Baptist church, and judging from his sober, upright, well ordered daily life one would conclude that he believes in carrying out the sublime precepts and doctrines embraced in both the lodge and the church to which he belongs. Mr. Williams is a man of striking personality, portly with a proper poise of dignity to his military bearing which makes him a conspicuous figure wherever he goes. He is a pleasant man to meet, always kind, affable, well-mannered and congenial; these commendable traits coupled with his industry and genuine worth make him a favorite in Marion county and wherever he is known, and he justly merits the high esteem of which he is the recipient.
Extracted 03 Nov 2017 by Norma Hass from 1909 Biographical and Reminiscent History of Richland, Clay and Marion Counties, Illinois, pages 54-56.